July 12, 2007 Thursday
Sunday we cleared in with Customs. Immigration is closed on weekends so we did the Immigration clearance at the Police station. The guide book says that if you clear in at the Police station rather than the official Immigration office, then you are supposed to check in with Immigration within 2 weeks. But I wrote on the Immigration form at the Police station that we want to stay in Bonaire until October 5; the police officer stamped the form and gave me a copy; and he stamped our passports for entering
Bonaire. He did not tell us anything about also
needing to go to the Immigration office within 2 weeks. So in our opinion we are cleared into Bonaire until October 5 and do not plan to visit
Immigration at all. Others we know have
had problems with the Immigration officers; so since we have a form with an
official stamp on it that says we will be here until October 5 and our
passports are also stamped, we see no reason to possibly complicate matters by visiting
the possibly contrary Immigration officers.
Sunday afternoon we played dominoes; only 6 of us showed up to play the weekly dominoes game. Bill & Carol of S/V HOPE and Louise & Gary of S/V LULU were the other players. LULU is a 61-ft Oyster; a lovely boat. We had met Louise & Gary last year here in
Bonaire. They are a couple of born and bred New
Yorkers who have been cruising since 1999.
I especially appreciate Louise’s sense of humor. She writes a column for Blue Water
Sailing. Her cruising logs can be found
at www.aboardlulu.com if anyone is
interested in reading yet another sailing log.
Michelle of BLUEPRINT MATCH also dropped by. Great to see that they are back on their
boat. Paul & Michelle and their 2
young children left BLUEPRINT MATCH here in Bonaire last November while they
returned to Florida
to work for 6 months. Now they have
replenished the cruising kitty and are delighted to be back out cruising
again. They also plan to go to Cartagena in September,
so we should be seeing again. Michelle
told us about several boats that we know planning to make the passage from
Curacao/Aruba to Cartagena
in late Aug/early Sept. If the timing
works out right maybe we can be part of their flotilla through the Colombian
Sunday evening we attended the Taste of Bonaire. This was rather blah-blah-blah. Just the same old Taste of Anything format; a lot of local made costume jewelry and a few food booths. We didn’t hang around there very long and went to dinner with Tony & Heidi of WORLD CITIZEN. Bill ate way too many ribs as Sunday is all-you-can-eat rib dinners. I opted for what they consider to be a Greek salad. It did at least have feta cheese in it so I guess that was their tribute to the Greeks. But it was drenched in a sweet dressing and had no kalamata olives, so definitely not my idea of a real Greek salad. Funny how our standards have changed while living in the
because I was perfectly happy with my “not-so-Greek” Greek salad. (Oh, but we will definitely visit Niko-Niko’s
while we are in Houston
during December for a taste of real Greek salad and those wonderful Greek
Monday we vacuumed the entire interior of our boat. There was a constant grit blown into the boat while we were in Isla Margarita. This dust has been bothering both of us but we delayed cleaning it thoroughly until we got away from all that dust in the air (WE HOPE!!). Monday night we went out to dinner with Gary & Louise of LULU and John of TANGO. John is batching it while his wife is visiting home for a few weeks. We walked to three restaurants before finally finding the fourth one that was open and not serving a buffet. Neither Bill nor I like buffets. I had the best grilled tuna dinner with a fresh tomato/basil sauce. By far the best tuna I have ever tasted. Bill opted for the sesame coated tuna with soy-ginger sauce. We thoroughly enjoyed visiting with Gary & Lou. John had to leave early because his dog was on the boat all alone.
Tuesday we walked around town, ate ice cream and visited the grocery store. Exciting, huh?
Wednesday night we went out for pizza with Tony & Heidi. Again, an enjoyable evening.
Today we awakened to a hard rain with lots of wind and some lightening. Thank goodness!! Everyone has been wanting a good solid rain to wash all this reddish-brown Saharan dirt off our boats. All the rigging is coated with the red dirt. Every time it has rained, it has rained so little that it just causes tiny rivulets of red-brown water to make a mess all over the topsides. This morning’s rain was heavy and long enough to wash away all the dirt. After the rain stopped we got out and I held the dinghy while Bill washed the sides of the hull down to the waterline. Much easier now that it has a fresh coat of wax from our recent haul-out. Cleans right up. I stand in the dinghy and hold onto the toerail of BEBE while Bill uses a brush on a broomstick and a bucket of fresh water mixed with Joy dish detergent to wash the sides of the hull. Our fresh water hose is just long enough to reach the entire length of the boat so we can rinse the sides with fresh water. We should do this daily because it is great exercise for the midrift. But that would use a bit too much water even for our high-capacity watermaker.
Bill is not feeling well. Too many ribs on Sunday night; too many sesame seeds on the tuna on Monday night (and way too much wine); and too many onions on the pizza last night. This is the first time that his Crohn’s has acted up since we moved aboard more than a year ago. Guess he will have to start watching his food intake more closely. Right now he says he will never eat on this island again, but I bet he changes his mind about that once the pain stops. There is a cruiser cocktail hour and book exchange in about an hour, but doubt we will attend. Bill is supposed to go diving with Tony tomorrow. Hope he gets to feeling better so that he doesn’t have to cancel.
July 14, 2007 Saturday
Bill feels all better and he did go diving with Tony on Friday. Bill said it was just “peaches.” I’m glad he got to try out his new BCD. Now we know it works fine in case he needs to make another emergency dive on another fouled prop. Hope Bill gets the opportunity to go diving often while we are here in one of the diving capitals of the world. I don’t share his enthusiasm about diving so he must find others to go with him. Tony dives almost every day so maybe Bill can tag along with him sometimes.
Tomorrow is the weekly dominoes game. There will also be a cruisers’ pot luck tomorrow night. Pot luck is different here in
Bonaire because there is no
grill. The restaurant in the marina is
closed on Sundays and the owner graciously allows the cruisers to use his table
and chair facilities for a pot luck, but there is no grill available to
us. Normally at a pot luck you bring a
dish to share with everyone and you bring your own meat or seafood to
grill. Since there is no way to cook
your own meat there and providing meat or seafood for 20+ people would be a bit
expensive (not to mention a lot of darn trouble to cook on your boat and haul
it down to the pot luck), there is no telling what foods will be served at a
Bonaire pot luck. Often it is all
vegetables. Plus, they meet for drinks
at 6:00 p.m. and don’t eat until 7:00 p.m.
Obviously any hot food you bring down there at 6:00 is lukewarm at best
by 7:00. So it is never a hot meal. I plan to bring crab cakes and a large dish
of green beans. Both of those can be
served room-temp. After all, the main
purpose of this event is to socialize; the food is secondary.